The almost impossible Liverpool manager swoop that would break the internet

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Liverpool will soon enter a new era without Jurgen Klopp as manager, but who should be the one to replace him?

Over the past 12 months, Liverpool have found themselves snatching the headlines for a number of reasons. A disappointing end to the 2022/23 season, Mohamed Salah's globally monitored links to Saudi Arabia, the team's resurgence to challenge for multiple trophies, and now Jurgen Klopp's pending departure.

In January, the German stunned the footballing world when he announced that he will be leaving Anfield after nine iconic years in charge. The 56-year-old admitted he is 'running out of energy' to do the job and suggested he had made his decision last year as talks started to focus on the summer transfer window.

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Liverpool have been linked with a number of exciting targets but their main focus is now on finding the perfect replacement for Klopp. It was always going to be a monumental task to take over from a manager who has spearheaded the Reds to such dizzying heights and created a new sense of togetherness among the fanbase. Unfortunately for his replacement, they have a lot to live up to.

It's no surprise that the gargantuan nature of the job is not sitting well with some candidates. Xabi Alonso remains Liverpool's main target and while countless updates have emerged since the initial link, one update claimed that the former Reds midfielder would not feel comfortable stepping straight into Klopp's shoes. Let's be honest, that is absolutely and completely fair. Not only has Klopp been hugely successful at Anfield but he is adored by the fans and has always been backed by them.

While Alonso is turning heads with his runaway season at Bayer Leverkusen, he is still relatively new to managing a senior side, having only previously coached Real Sociedad's B team before his move to the Black and Reds.

Liverpool need to target managers who will not be fazed by the magnitude of the role presented to them. A manager with a strong trophy count will be a good place to start but the Reds also need a big personality and someone who is established enough to not fear taking hold of the reins at an English giant like Liverpool.

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If you asked fans who they would want as an ideal Klopp replacement, if they could have anybody in the world, it's likely there would be an interesting mix of responses. How many do you think would say Pep Guardiola?

It's a completely outlandish, bordering on impossible thing to consider, but the legendary manager ticks a lot of the main boxes that Liverpool are looking for. Before we take a look at Guardiola's impressive career, it would be the signing of the century if Liverpool prised the 53-year-old away from one of their biggest and closest rivals. It's not going to happen. Surely there is no narrative in this lifetime that Guardiola leaves City for Liverpool, even if he lets his contract run down and leaves freely in 2025.

It's like picturing the same scenario but flipped, with Reds fans learning Klopp has returned to coaching following a photo of him holding up a sky blue jersey, grinning from ear to ear with the hashtag #WelcomeJurgen doing the rounds. It is an utterly, utterly devastating and eye-twitching thought.

But it's fun to play a bit of 'imagine that', and if we're talking about who would be a solid Klopp replacement — without factoring in how strange it would be, how likely it is, or whether fans would even want him or not — Guardiola is unarguably up there.

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The biggest thing to note is Guardiola and Klopp's respect for one another. These two juggernauts have gone toe-to-toe over the years and value each other as both competition and peers. Both have admitted in the past that they have been motivated to become a better competitor thanks to the pressure and rivalry the other has instilled. However, Klopp is adamant there is no negative rivalry between the two iconic managers, and he recently had a lot of praise for Spaniard.

"Pep is the best manager in the world. I have a really good life being not even close to that. I don’t know how could I judge managers from the past but in my lifetime he’s the outstanding manager. I see excellence when I face it and Pep is definitely that."

The respect goes both ways, as Guardiola also appreciates Klopp's pedigree as a manager and the unit he has built at Liverpool. He lauded the German for his time in charge of Mainz and Dortmund as well as Liverpool, and said his style of play is 'so attractive and positive'.

Guardiola is also an admirer of Liverpool as a team, not just Klopp. When then two sides met in their recent title-challenging clash, the City boss praised the Reds for their display and confirmed the heavy task that always comes ahead of an Anfield visit. The two sides drew 1-1 to keep this enthralling chase wide open.

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"They are really good with the way that they play. It is not just character, it is the organisation from the way that they play," he told We give a lot of credit to Liverpool. Today, they prove again that what they have done is unbelievable. I know how difficult it is to come here and win."

Guardiola is serial winner and has now won everything possible with Man City following their long-awaited Champions League success. Since his arrival in 2016, the 53-year-old has won 16 trophies with the Citizens, including three consecutive Premier League titles. Just focusing on his City tenure alone and Guardiola earns the accolade of one of the world's leading managers, then you look at his previous success.

After a glittering career with Barcelona as a player, the Spaniard guided his former team to glory as a manager, lifting 14 trophies during his four year tenure. He then enjoyed further success with Bayern Munich and he is the only manager in history to win the continental treble twice. Guardiola is also the record-holder for most consecutive league games won in La Liga, the Bundesliga and the Premier League.

His achievements are simply mouthwatering and his respect for Liverpool and Klopp's work at the club would make him a sensational appointment, whether it's a completely out-of-this-world idea to consider or not.

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